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Specialized Surgical Care for Ovarian Torsion
If you experience symptoms such as severe, sudden pain or cramping in your lower abdomen, you should notify your doctor as soon as possible. This could indicate a serious reproductive health issue such as ovarian torsion, which may require the removal of one of your ovaries. Our fertility team in San Antonio, TX, uses advanced technology to evaluate your reproductive organs and recommend the most appropriate treatment for your condition. Fertility Center of San Antonio has been serving patients for over 25 years and will provide you with the highest level of care and compassion.
What Is Ovarian Torsion?
Ovarian torsion (also referred to as adnexal torsion) is a condition that occurs when one of your ovaries becomes twisted around its stalk. When this happens, it can restrict the blood vessels, cutting off blood flow from the affected ovary. Without timely treatment, your ovary could die due to this lack of blood supply. As such, it is considered a gynecological emergency. However, many patients who receive early treatment can avoid the need for ovary removal.
Symptoms that may indicate ovarian torsion include:
- Severe abdominal pain
- Nausea and vomiting
While the onset of these symptoms is typically sudden, some patients may experience this discomfort intermittently for several weeks. Even if you are experiencing these issues, they may also be signs of other conditions such as appendicitis or a urinary tract infection.
Are You at Risk?
Ovarian torsion is fairly uncommon, only affecting about 2.7 to 3.5 percent of women. However, certain patients may be at a higher risk of developing the condition, such as those who:
- Have a history of ovarian cysts
- Are pregnant
- Have experienced large tissue masses on the ovary
- Are post-menopausal
While ovarian torsion can develop in women of all ages, it is most common during the reproductive years. It is important to note that ovarian torsion is not caused by lifestyle factors, so you cannot take preventive action. However, hormonal birth control may be able to reduce your risk of recurrence.
Ovarian Torsion and Your Fertility
Having a single ovary typically does not directly affect your chances of conceiving. However, underlying causes such as endometriosis and ovarian cysts can. While you may only have one ovary, an egg should still be released each month. It is important that the fallopian tube is healthy so that a fertilized egg can travel to the uterus.
Diagnosing Ovarian Torsion
To determine if you are suffering from ovarian torsion, several tests may be performed, including a pelvic examination. During the evaluation, a transvaginal ultrasound will be conducted to examine the reproductive organs.
Having a single ovary typically does not directly affect your chances of conceiving. However, underlying causes such as endometriosis and ovarian cysts can.
Surgery is required to untwist the ovary. We can perform the procedure laparoscopically, which is less invasive than other methods. Using a camera and small instruments, we can carefully restore blood flow to the ovary. However, in some cases, the ovary may be beyond saving. A laparoscopic procedure can also be performed to remove the ovary, as well as the fallopian tube, if necessary.
Do Not Hesitate to Seek Treatment
If you are experiencing symptoms of ovarian torsion, you should meet with one of our fertility specialists immediately. We can also help if you are experiencing fertility issues after having an ovary removed. To schedule your consultation, contact us online or call us at (210) 405-3154.